What is a Lopsided Smile?

In this blog post, we are going to discuss what a lopsided smile means, what causes a lopsided smile. We also learn how to use a lopsided smile and how people perceive them. 

Towards the end, we have discussed certain ways to fix a lopsided smile, followed by the benefits of smiling. 

What is a lopsided smile?

 A lopsided smile is an uneven smile. It appears uneven in a way where the left side and the right side of the mouth do not match. One side of the face is pulled up in a way where it’s smiling and the other side is the opposite which means it may be downturned.

What causes a lopsided smile?

Below are some health conditions that can cause an asymmetrical face:

Genetics

Sometimes genes and development can cause a lopsided smile. If it runs in your family, chances are that you might have it too.

Lifestyle habits

Sometimes having a poor posture, or sleeping with your face pressed against the pillow, and some other similar habits can all contribute to having an asymmetrical face.

Injury 

Injury to your face in childhood, having facial surgery due to an injury, or experiencing trauma can sometimes cause a lopsided smile.

Bell’s Palsy

Bell’s Palsy is caused due to paralysis of facial nerves. It weakens the muscles on one side of your face and can cause a lopsided smile.  

Sun Damage

With growing age, exposure to the sun and it’s UV rays may lead to developing spots, patches, and moles on your skin. This can be caused to one side or area of your face, where there is the maximum amount of sun damage.

Smoking

Smoking regularly exposes you to toxins, hence increasing the chances of having an asymmetrical face. 

Dental Work

The use of dentures or having dental veneers may sometimes change the symmetry of your face. Getting a tooth extracted, causes changes in the facial muscles which may be another cause for asymmetry.

Ageing

The facial asymmetry increases with your growing age. Naturally, your ears and nose grow as you change, causing asymmetry.

 Stroke

There are different signs of a stroke, when you identify signs such as dropping of the face or your smile is suddenly uneven you must immediately consult a doctor. 

Experiencing numbness and difficulty in speaking are also some common signs of a stroke.

Torticollis

Also known as a twisted neck, is a condition where the person has abnormal positioning of neck muscles. This condition can sometimes take place in the womb itself.

Most cases are temporary and the symptoms can be resolved, it is hardly ever permanent.

Various other health conditions can cause a lopsided smile or contribute to facial asymmetry. Apart from health conditions, sometimes there are other reasons why people may intentionally use a lopsided smile.

What are some uses of a lopsided smile?

A lopsided smile is used when there is a presence of incongruent emotions. People smile unevenly when:

  • They can’t fully commit to contentment
  • Don’t particularly feel happy but smile just to acknowledge the opposite person
  • Smirking or trying to flirt
  • Joking around or making a sarcastic comment
  • To portray humour and uncertainty

When people don’t want to be perceived seriously in certain situations, they often use a lopsided smile.

How do people perceive a lopsided smile?

When you flash a lopsided smile, it is usually perceived as a frame of mind that is uncertain.

For instance, if you ask someone if they’re feeling okay and they say they’re doing good but smile in a lopsided way; you’re going to think that maybe they are lying or are trying to be sarcastic.

The uneven smile is often used to depict cheeky humour amongst friends and is perceived as a presence of conflicting emotions. An apologetic smile can also look similar to a lopsided smile. You can couple a lopsided smile with a shoulder shrug or with upturned palms.

A lopsided smile shows sometimes that you’re hiding something or are apprehensive about something. It doesn’t have to always convey joy. You can tell that the person is trying to hide how uncomfortable they are or that they’re not too happy talking about a particular topic.

How to fix a lopsided smile?

A smile can bring you lots of confidence. Although, you should only try to change your smile if it’s affecting your confidence level.

If you feel you have a crooked, uneven, or lopsided smile, here are some ways to fix it:

  • Chew on both sides of your mouth
  • Sleep on both sides evenly
  • Practice facial exercises
  • Play around with your smile, choose whatever suits you the best
  • Use concealer to contour your lips
  • Use a lip filler to plump your lips 
  • Get dental fixes 

Again, you don’t have to change anything about your smile if you are completely confident and comfortable about it.

It’s all about the way you feel.

If you have a developed a lopsided smile due to medical reasons, then it best to consult a health expert or a doctor. 

They can provide you with the options that are available, depending on your condition.

Benefits of smiling 

Smiling can boost your mood as well as your confidence. It leads to a perception of positivity. It also has multiple health benefits.

Such as: 

  • Reduced blood pressure
  • Reduced stress
  • Strengthening of the immune system
  • It elevates your mood

Smiling is contagious, when you smile, others smile looking at you. It helps you stay positive, when you find yourself in a tough situation and you smile, it automatically uplifts your mood a little and can help you deal with your problems. 

Irrespective of how forced a smile is, it automatically sends a signal that you got this and things can turn out to be better with a positive outlook. 

When you go for your interview and if you’re smiling, there is a high chance that you will look more confident. You will notice a better response.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we discussed what a lopsided smile means, what causes a lopsided smile. We also learned how to use a lopsided smile and how people perceive them. Towards the end, we have discussed certain ways to fix a lopsided smile, followed by the benefits of smiling. 

Always remember, you can rock an uneven face with the right amount of confidence. As long as you are comfortable, no one can make you feel inferior about your smile. Mess around with your smile and use a smile that makes you feel the most comfortable and at ease.

Let me know your opinions!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Lopsided Smile

What causes a lopsided smile?

Various health conditions such as Bell’s Palsy, Misaligned teeth, Hemifacial microsomia, Overbite, Torticollis, Sun Damage, etc. can cause a lopsided smile. In most cases, it can be cured or fixed through fillers and facial implants and various other techniques.

Sometimes, complexity in genetics can also cause facial asymmetry. Cleft lip and palate and vascular complications are health conditions that studies point to as a cause for a lopsided smile.

Are lopsided smiles attractive?

Sometimes, a crooked smile can appear to be attractive. It adds to your charm if you use it at the right place at the right time. It can make you look easygoing and relaxed. Although, in some cases, lopsided smiles can look pretty weird. And that’s when people try to fix it through different techniques. 

Does sleeping on your side cause an asymmetrical face?

Some people may have the idea that constantly sleeping on your side, or sleeping on your belly, or sitting with crossed legs for too long can cause an asymmetrical face. Some even believe that having a bad posture or resting your face on your hand can contribute to an uneven face.

Why does my face look lopsided when I look in the mirror?

Generally, mirrors flip forwards and backwards and not horizontally. When you look in the mirror the right side of your face stays at the right side of the mirror and the same with the left side.  The reason why your face looks different is that your perspective has left/right flipped around. 

Can you fix an asymmetrical face naturally?

Yes, in some cases, facial asymmetry can be fixed naturally. Various techniques such as facial exercise and face yoga can help you fix an asymmetrical face. It also helps you look younger, and improves the contouring of your face.

References

Body language of the uneven smile or lopsided smile. (2015, June 6). Nonverbal Body Language Dictionary. https://bodylanguageproject.com/nonverbal-dictionary/body-language-of-the-uneven-smile-or-lopsided-smile/

How to fix an uneven smile and look your best. (2020, December 31). wikiHow: How-to instructions you can trust. Retrieved March 19, 2021, from https://www.wikihow.com/Fix-an-Uneven-Smile?amp=1

Jaffe, E. (2011). The psychological study of smiling. APS Observer, 23(10).

Mary Grace B Quitalig. (2021, March 4). Lopsided smile (A complete guide). OptimistMinds. https://optimistminds.com/lopsided-smile/

Neuhoff, C. C., & Schaefer, C. (2002). Effects of laughing, smiling and howling on mood. Psychological Reports, 91(3_suppl), 1079-1080.

Watson, K. (n.d.). Asymmetrical face: Causes, treatments, and more. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/asymmetrical-face#causes

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